The dimwitted LOVE TO KILL falls flat in its attempts at black comedy and romance. The film premiered under the title THE GIRL GETS MOE on HBO, before it was released on home video.
Illegal arms dealer Moe (Tony Danza) considers quitting the business after he falls in love with Monica (Elizabeth Barondes), a gun enthusiast living with her sister Beth (Amy Locane) and their cancer-stricken mother (Louise Fletcher). After a gun deal turns into a messy shoot-out, Moe and his
partner Franco (Rustam Branaman) enjoy a double date with Monica and Beth. The evening culminates in erotic escapades at Moe's house until Beth, romping around with a nearly naked Franco, slips and breaks her neck. Franco panics and hides the body, which Moe finds the following morning. Afraid of
losing Monica, he agrees to hide it. Monica witnesses them stashing the cadaver and calls the cops, believing she's witnessed a murder. She reaches Detective Brannagin (James Russo), a dirty cop who tips off Moe.
Meanwhile, Moe and Franco attempt a huge gun deal they can retire on, but it results in another shoot-out. In Monica's apartment, Brannagin tries to prevent her from leaving, but she realizes he's covering for Moe and scalds him with boiling water to get away. She drives her truck through Moe's
living room and, amidst the subsequent gunplay by Moe's confederates, accidentally kills Franco. At the coroner's office, she learns that Beth's death was indeed accidental. Brannagin, angry at Moe's amused reaction to his scarred face, is blown up trying to plant a bomb in Moe's house. Monica
returns to Moe's and the pair argue and point guns at each other until her neighbor Harry (Brian Brophy) arrives and shoots Moe in the shoulder. Later, in handcuffs, the pair reconcile and promise to get married upon their release from jail.
Director James Bruce and actor/co-screenwriter Rustam Branaman, who collaborated on HEADLESS BODY IN A TOPLESS BAR (1996), reteam for this feeble comedy. Lacking a cohesive plot, LOVE TO KILL never sustains much interest or momentum; the result is a boring, unfunny waste of time. Things become
even more convoluted with the introduction of several unnecessary (and lengthy) scenes and subplots that stall any progress in the story. These include Beth and Monica's sick mother, a "death-brokering" scheme that a supporting character (played by Michael Madsen) tries to lure Moe into, and a
car-chase scene towards the end that could have been removed completely. Performances never rise above ordinary, with Danza giving the same one-note, lovable-lug performance he's been delivering since his start on the TV series "Taxi," while Madsen does his stock bad-guy impression, with one fresh
twist added--he likes to pick through the pockets of dead people. Costars Branaman, Elizabeth Barondes, James Russo, Louise Fletcher, and Amy Locane are well-cast, but play poorly-written characters. Minor celebs Moon Zappa and Todd Bridges ("Different Strokes") are amusing in brief cameos. The
technical side of the film is adequate, but the art direction and sets are uninspired and reflective of the film's low budget. (Extreme profanity, violence, sexual situations.)
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- Released: 1997
- Rating: R
- Review: The dimwitted LOVE TO KILL falls flat in its attempts at black comedy and romance. The film premiered under the title THE GIRL GETS MOE on HBO, before it was released on home video. Illegal arms dealer Moe (Tony Danza) considers quitting the business afte… (more)